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Electrical Characteristics of Cables

Electrical Characteristics of Cables

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Published by Iuliu Grad

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Published by: Iuliu Grad on Nov 09, 2011
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12/28/2012

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CHAPTER 4
ELECTRICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF CABLES
Original Author:
H. N. Muller, Jr.
C
BLESare classified according to their insulation aspaper, varnished-cambric, rubber, or asbestos, eachof these materials having unique characteristicswhich render it suitable for particular applications. Be-cause cables for power transmission and distribution arecomposed of so many different types of insulation, con-ductors, and sheathing materials, the discussion here mustbe limited to those cable designs most commonly used.Reasonable estimates of electrical characteristics for cablesnot listed can be obtained in most cases by reading fromthe table for a cable having similar physical dimensions.Paper can be wound onto a conductor in successive lay-ers to achieve a required dielectric strength, and this is theinsulation generally used for cables operating at 10 000volts and higher. Paper insulation is impregnated in dif-ferent ways, and accordingly cables so insulated can besub-divided into solid, oil-filled, or gas-filled types.Solid paper-insulated cables are built up of layers ofpaper tape wound onto the conductor and impregnatedwith a viscous oil, over which is applied a tight-fitting,extruded lead sheath. Multi-conductor solid cables arealso available, but the material shown here covers onlysingle- and three-conductor types. Three-conductor cablesare of either belted or shielded construction. The beltedassembly consists of the three separately insulated con-ductors cabled together and wrapped with another layer ofimpregnated paper, or belt, before the sheath is applied. Inthe shielded construction each conductor is individuallyinsulated and covered with a thin metallic non-magneticshielding tape; the three conductors are then cabled to-gether, wrapped with a metallic binder tape, and sheathedwith lead. The purpose of the metallic shielding tapearound each insulated conductor is to control the electro-static stress, reduce corona formation, and decrease thethermal resistance. To minimize circulating current undernormal operating conditions and thus limit the power loss,shielding tape only three mils in thickness is used. Solidsingle-conductor cables are standard for all voltages from1 to 69 kv; solid three-conductor cables are standard from1 to 46 kv. Sample sections of paper-insulated single-con-ductor, three-conductor belted, and three-conductor shieldedcables are shown in Fig.
1
(a), (b), and (c) respectively.Oil-filled paper-insulated cables are available in single- orthree-conductor designs.Single-conductor oil-filled cableconsists of a concentric stranded conductor built around anopen helical spring core, which serves as a channel for theflow of low-viscosity oil.This cable is insulated andsheathed in the same manner as solid cables, as a compar-ison of Figs.
1
a) and
1
d) indicates. Three-conductor oil-filled cables are all of the shielded design, and have three
Revised by :
J. S. Williams
(b) Three-conductor belted, compact-sector conductors.(c) Three-conductor shielded, compact-sector conductors.(d) Single-conductor oil-filled, hollow-stranded conductor.(e) Three-conductor oil-filled, compact-sector conductors.
Fig. l—Paper-insulated cables.
Courtesy
of General
Cable
Corporation
oil channels composed of helical springs that extendthrough the cable in spaces normally occupied by fillermaterial. This construction is shown in Fig.
1 (e).
Oil-filled cables are relatively new and their application hasbecome widespread in a comparatively short time. The oilused is only slightly more viscous than transformer oil, and
64
 
Chapter 4
Electrical Characteristics of Cables 65
remains fluid at al1 operating temperatures. The oil in thecable and its connected reservoirs is maintained undermoderate pressure so that, during load cycles oil may flowbetween the cable and the reservoirs to prevent the devel-opment ofvoids or excessiveprevention of void formationpressurein paperin the cable. Theinsulation permitsthe use of greatly reduced insulation thickness for a givenoperating voltage. Another advantage of oil-filled cables isthat oil will seep out through any crack or opening whichdevelops in the sheath, thereby preventing the entrance ofwater at the defective point. This action prevents theoccurrence of a fault caused by moisture in the insulation,and since operating records show that this cause accountsfor a significant percentage of all high-voltage cable faults,it is indeed a real advantage. Single-conductor oil-filledcables are used for voltages ranging from 69 to 230 kv; theusual range for three-conductor oil-filled cables is from 23to 69 kv.Gas-filled cables of the low-pressure type have recentlybecome standard up to 46 kv. The single-conductor typeemploys construction generally similar to that of solidcables, except that longitudinal flutes or other channels areprovided at the inner surface of the sheath to conductnitrogen along the cable. The three-conductor design em-ploys channels in the filler spaces among the conductors,much like those provided in oil-filled three-conductorcables. The gas is normally maintained between 10 and 15pounds per squareall cable voids andsheath or joints.inch gauge pressure, and serves to fillexclude moisture at faulty points in the
Courtesy of the
Okonite-Caltender
Cable
Company
Fig. 2—High-pressure pipe-type oil-filled cable.
High-pressure cables, of either the oil- or gas-filled vari-ety, are being used widely for the higher range of voltages.The physical and electrical characteristics are fairly wellknown, but their specifications are not yet standardized.The usual application calls for pressure of about 200 poundsper square inch, contained by a steel pipe into which threesingle-conduct or cables are pulled.The immediate pres-encc of the ironpipe makes difficult the calculations ofcircuit impedance, particularly the zero-sequence quanti-ties. Most high-pressure cables are designed so that theoil or gas filler comes into direct contact with the conductorinsulation; in oil-filled pipe-type cables a temporary leadsheath can be stripped from the cable as it is pulled into thesteel pipe; in gas-filled pipe-type cables the lead sheath sur-rounding each conductor remains in place, with nitrogenintroduced both inside and outside the sheath so that nodifferential pressure develops across the sheath. Examplesof oil- and gas-filled pipe-type cables are shown in Figs. 2and 3.
Courtesy
of
eneral Cable
Corporation
Fig. 3—Cross-section of high-pressure pipe-type gas-filledcable. Oil-filled pipe-type cable may have a similar cross-section.
Compression cable is another high-pressure pipe-typecable in which oil or nitrogen gas at high pressure is intro-duced within a steel pipe containing lead-sheathed solid-type singleconductor-cables; no high-pressure oil or gas isintroduced directly inside the lead sheaths, but voids with-in the solid-type insulation are prevented by pressureexerted externally on the sheaths. This construction issketched in Fig. 4.During recent years there has been a trend toward themodification of cable conductors to reduce cost and im-prove operating characteristics, particularly in multi-con-ductor cables. Referring to Fig. 5, the first departure fromconcentric* round conductors was the adoption of sector-shaped conductors in three-conductor cables. More re-cently a crushed stranding that results in a compactedsector has been developed and has found widespread usefor conductor sizes of l/O A.W.G. and larger. Its use insmaller conductors is not practical. The principal advan-tages of such a conductor are: reduced overall diameter fora given copper cross-section; elimination of space betweenthe conductor and the insulation, which results in higher
Fig. 4—Cross-sectional sketch of compression
cable.
 
66
Electrical Characteristics
of Cables
Chapter 4
Photographs in this
figure
furnished by the Okonite-Callender
Cable Company
Fig. 5—Cable conductors.
(a) Standard concentric stranded.(b) Compact round.(c) Non-compact sector.(d) Compact sector.(e) Annular stranded (rope core).(f) Segmental.(g) Rope stranded.(h) Hollow core.
electrical breakdown; low a-c resistance due to minimizingof proximity effect; retention of the close stranding duringbending; and for solid cables, elimination of many lon-gitudinal channels along which impregnating compound canmigrate. While most single-conductor cables are of theconcentric-strand type, they may also be compact-round,annular-stranded, segmental, or hollow-core.
I. ELECTRICAL CHARACTERISTICS
The electrical characteristics of cables have been dis-cussed comprehensively in a series of articles’ upon whichmuch of the material presented here has been based. Thischapter is primarily concerned with
the
determination ofthe electrical constants most commonly needed for power-system calculations, particular emphasis being placed onquantities necessary for the application of symmetricalcomponents.2 A general rule is that regardless of the com-plexity of mutual inductive relations between componentparts of individual phases, the method of symmetricalcomponents can be applied rigorously whenever there issymmetry among phases.All the three-conductor cablesinherently satisfy this condition by the nature of their con-struction; single-conductor cables may or may not, althoughusually the error is small in calculating short-circuit cur-rents. Unsymmetrical spacing and change in permeabilityresulting from different phase currents when certain meth-ods of eliminating sheath currents are used, may producedissymmetry.Those physical characteristics that are of general inter-est in electrical application problems have been includedalong with electrical characteristics in the tables of thissection.All linear dimensions of radius, diameter, separation, ordistance to equivalent earth return are expressed in inchesin the equations in this chapter. This is unlike overheadtransmission line theory where dimensions are in feet,; theuse of inches when dealing with cable construction seemsappropriate. Many equations contain a factor for fre-quency, f, which is the circuit operating frequency in cyclesper second.
1. Geometry of Cables
The space relationship among sheaths and conductors ina cable circuit is a major factor in determining reactance,capacitance, charging current, insulation resistance, dielec-tric loss, and thermal resistance. The symbols used in thischapter for various cable dimensions, both for single-con-ductor and three-conductor types, are given in Figs. 6 and7.
Several factors
have come into universal use for definingthe cross-section geometry of a cable circuit, and some ofthese are covered in the following paragraphs. 1,2
Geometric Mean Radius
(GMR)—This factor is aproperty usually applied to the conductor alone, and de-pends on the material and stranding used in its construc-tion. One component of conductor reactance3 is normallycalculated by evaluating the integrated flux-linkages bothinside and outside the conductor within an overall twelve-inch radius. Considering a solid conductor, some of the fluxlines lie within the conductor and contribute to total flux-linkages even though they link only a portion of the totalconductor current; if a tubular conductor having an infi-nitely thin wall were substituted for the solid conductor, itsflux would necessarily all be external to the tube. A theo-retical tubular conductor, in order to be inductively equiv-alent to a solid conductor, must have a smaller radius so

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